Shonah Marie had a fairly sheltered upbringing, and would now admit that she was quite removed from what she would call real-world issues. However, it wasn’t too long before some very real issues invaded her life.
I don’t know how people get through tough things like that without community and without Jesus. I just don’t have an answer outside of those two things. – Shonah Marie
It was the tough times that helped her to become the person that she is today but the lessons she learned during those times haven’t been easy.
I could feel God’s heart breaking for what was going on. I could feel his sorrow for what we were going through and learning to sit with Jesus in that empathy was probably the greatest gift. – Shonah Marie
As part of our conversation, we opened a window into her life, discussing her early years living in a very protected environment before finding herself facing struggles she had no idea how to navigate.
I feel like I remained in that childlikeness for quite a long time, which I feel benefited me in some areas in the long run, but also left me somewhat naive and innocent towards how to handle navigating real-world circumstances. I kind of call it the bubble. – Shonah Marie
You can hear Shonah’s story by listening to Bleeding Daylight, wherever you find podcasts, or by clicking play on the audio player below.
I released what I consider to be a very important episode of my podcast, Bleeding Daylight, this week. As well as sharing his personal story, my guest has some extremely valuable encouragement and guidance for parents, especially dads. I am convinced that this episode will be of great benefit to many families.
The struggles we face, the hurts we experience, will generally push us one of two ways. They can continue to harm and destroy us long after the events that initially caused us damage, or they can be the driver for transformation. Of course, even when we take the road of transformation, there’s no guarantee that it will be easy or painless. Ryan Roy has not only seen transformation in his own life, he’s actively empowering others towards transformation.
What you desire, and what I desire, and what every little girl and every little boy and what every adult on this planet desires is to be loved, through actions and through words. – Ryan Roy
You can hear Bleeding Daylight wherever you listen to podcasts or check out this week’s episode by clicking play on the audio player below.
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Have you got a few minutes for me to ask you a slightly odd question?
Have you ever stared evil in the face and thought, “this is unacceptable, this can’t go on”?
I have. I’ve been face to face with extreme poverty and its shocking human consequences in several countries, and while it’s been my job at Compassion Australia for over seven years to speak up for the people I’ve met and share what I’ve experienced, it’s not always easy.
I’ve seen horrors that will haunt me for the rest of my life; things I’ve never shared, even with those closest to me.
How can I stop those things becoming a burden too great to bear? I have resolved to be an agent of change and healing and you can too. If I can make even a small difference, I’ll know that I’ve spent my life well.
That’s why I’m taking part in Ride for Compassion Coast to Coast in September and October this year. I’ll be cycling 4,200 kilometres across Australia from Perth to Newcastle to provide desperately needed assistance for children and their families who live in extreme poverty.
Of course, I can train hard, and I’ll certainly have to do that, and I can ride all those kilometres, but it won’t bring worthwhile change without your help.
You are the key to my success.
It’s when you join me in saying no to the evil of poverty and stand with me to say that it’s unacceptable that together we can start transforming lives.
While we all face the very real effects of the current pandemic, the World Bank has estimated that COVID-19 will push 150 million people into extreme poverty this year. It’s the first rise in global extreme poverty in over 20 years. That’s unacceptable.
Your generous donation will touch the lives of some of the most vulnerable people in our world through Compassion’s work around the world, including those ravaged by the pandemic.
I am personally seeking to raise $25,000. I really need your help to make that a reality.
I don’t know if you can manage to give $50, $500 or $5,000 but I do know that your contribution, of any amount, will put me closer to my target of $25,000.
Please don’t delay. While the ride is still some months away, your donation today will go straight to work against the unacceptable.
Another way you can help me reach my target is by sponsoring a child through Compassion. Every child that is sponsored via my fundraising page will be counted as $1,000 towards my $25,000 target. There is a button on my fundraising page that will allow you to meet your new sponsored child today.
Sponsorship gives kids safe places to play, the chance to see a doctor when they’re sick, education, and the opportunity to be known, loved and protected.
If you want to know more about donating to Compassion, or about Compassion Child Sponsorship, please get in touch. You can leave me a message in the comments section of this post or head to my contact page.
Thank you for joining me in telling poverty that we won’t let it win.
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Life for Suzanne Burns went off the rails when she left home as a young woman. From a very sheltered upbringing, she soon found herself using drugs and alcohol and shortly afterwards becoming a single mother.
Suzanne has spent the last 20 years serving others. Part of that service includes being the founder and executive director of Foundation House, a maternity home for pregnant and homeless women, which offers educational and job training programs.
Her story is inspiring and she is this week’s guest on Bleeding Daylight. Find Bleeding Daylight wherever you listen to podcasts or at listen by pressing play on the audio player below.
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If you haven’t said it out loud, you’ve probably heard your internal voice whisper those words or something similar a number of times over the years. I know I have.
Is there something overwhelming waiting for you in 2021? Does it all seem too much?
We talk about having mountains to climb and I have a couple of giant mountains ahead of me this year. My biggest problem with climbing mountains is that I have a fear of heights. As well as the herculean task of climbing, I have to deal with all the doubts and fears along the way.
How did we get here?
While 2020 seemed to last for years, we’ve finally left it in the past and arrived on the shores of 2021. That’s scary because I can no longer put off the urgency of what I’ll be doing ths year by saying, ‘next year’.
This is where reality bites. In just 37 weeks I hope to begin cycling right across Australia. I am currently in no shape to take on such a challenge.
Ride for Compassion Coast to Coast will start on Saturday the 18th of September. Together with around 30 other cyclists I’ll arrive at Compassion’s head office in Newcastle, NSW on Wednesday the 20th of October, having cycled over 4,200 km. There’ll be 28 riding days and 5 rest days. The average riding distance for those riding days will be just over 150 km. Our longest days will be just under 200 km.
I have quite some experience with the ride aspect of the trip having cycled across Australia six times previously but fond memories won’t get me there.
I’ve continued to age since my last crossing and I know that the distances will feel longer. The training will be harder. The aches will last longer.
This year’s ride is a huge mountain.
So, what’s getting me back on my bike if it’s really that hard?
That’s the other mountain.
For just over seven years I’ve been working for Compassion Australia, a Christian international holistic child development organisation.
I’ve visited Compassion’s work in 7 of the 25 developing countries we serve and I’ve met hundreds of children and their families who are being released from poverty in Jesus’ name.
The task of turning the tide on global poverty has been hard enough, but the current pandemic is estimated to push around 150 million more people into extreme poverty. There is an urgent need to raise and direct funds to those who have been most affected. A colossal mountain.
Time to start climbing.
It’s the start of 2021. We’re at base camp. Time to begin the climb … the arduous, at times seemingly impossible, climb.
I’ll begin by reminding myself that I’ve cycled those distances before and that despite my ageing body, for the sake of the most vulnerable, children living in poverty, I can do it again. It’ll take a lot of training and persistence but I can reach that peak.
Of course, all that work will be wasted if it doesn’t produce resources to help those in most need.
Hand me the harness.
I won’t ask you to join me on a bike but I do need your help to overcome these challenges.
Your encouragement as I train is vital. There’ll be days when it’ll be ‘too windy’, ‘too hot’, ‘too wet’ to train. On those days it’ll be easier to stay in bed so I’ll need your encouragement to keep me motivated.
I’ll also need you to donate whatever you can to help me reach my $25,000 target. I don’t know how I’ll get there without you.
You can sponsor a child living in poverty or make a straight donation.
Sponsorship gives kids safe places to play, the chance to see a doctor when they’re sick, education, and the opportunity to discover Jesus’ incredible love for them.
A donation will be put to immediate use in helping those affected by the pandemic.
Will you help me climb a couple of mountains this year by giving more children a chance to live, dream and hope? Sponsor a child today or donate now through my fundraising page.
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